So anyway, I hyperventilated for a few minutes, then went and made a pot of coffee, just so I could have coffee and Baileys - I'm actually not much of a drinker, but when I want some good soothin', a cup of lightly doctored coffee goes a long way.
I came back, stared at my cutting table for awhile, and then carefully folded the pattern back up, folded up the fabric, and went to my computer, as always, so I could read the blogs of the truly talented, in hopes that I would absorb some of their talent by osmosis.
In the end, I ended up back in the sewing room, plowing through my pattern bins, until I came across a pattern I got from...I'm not sure where - I've been collecting patterns for awhile, and they normally come in little lots. Anyway, it has a notation in black sharpie that says "+ size cowl neck, loose sleeve", and it's made out of plain old waxed paper.
I pulled out some stretchy blue knit fabric that is so disagreeable feeling that I was tempted to wear rubber gloves in order to cut out the pattern. The pattern pieces are small enough that they fit on my biggest rotary mat, so I laid them out there, pinned a little, used cans of soup to weight everything down, then cut the pieces out, sewed them together, and voila - this is the result. Painful!
Rest assured, it actually looks worse on me than on my dummy, who currently has no name. Actually, I rather like the cowl, but the "loose" sleeves make me look like I've been doing battle with a weed wacker.
On a happier note, I FINISHED something. It was horrible, and will be unwearable until I hack off the sleeves - it actually looks okay under a light cardigan, but again, the disagreeable feeling fabric will probably discourage me from actually wearing it.
To reward myself for my quasi-success, I took myself shopping at my favorite source for vintage patterns, which is the local Value Village. While there, not only did I find some more cute 50's and 60's patterns (not in my size, of course), but I also found this:
What excited me most, of course, was that it still has the original manual, and everything looks just like new. The whole kit and kaboodle was in a plastic bag, laid out much as it is in the photo, except that the extra bits were sort of rolling around in the bottom of the bag.
I brought it home and popped the bag open, and was moderately horrified at the smell rolling out of the bag - it smells like mothballs and despair. Oh well, a good airing-out should fix that. It's currently stinking up my sewing room, but since the sewing room already smelled faintly of despair anyway, it's really not so bad.